The Gear Ahead
This has been an amazing year for photography. But it's not over yet. Camera makers still have a few tricks up their sleeves, and our sources have shared a few of them with us. Here they are:
1. DSLR DELUXE Canon made big news recently with the announcement of its new mid-level DSLR, the 20D. What Canon fans didn't know at the time was that the company had just finished development of a replacement for its top DSLR, the EOS-1Ds. Slated to start shipping to stores this month for an expected street price of $7,000, the EOS-1Ds Mark II will pack a whopping 16.6MP full-frame CMOS sensor into a body that looks remarkably similar to the 8MP EOS-1D Mark II. Obviously geared toward pros, it promises to be one of the most exciting cameras of the year, though not the fastest-it tops out at 4 frames per second.
Canon will also have three new digital compacts this month: the SD20, SD200, and SD300 (expected street prices: $349, $299, and $399). The SD200 and SD300 both have 3X optical zoom, 2.5-inch LCDs, and are 3MP and 4MP, respectively. The SD20 is the 5MP successor to the SD10 and has a 1.5-inch LCD and no optical zoom.
2. UPPER-MIDDLE-CLASS DIGI Sony's ultrathin Cyber-shot T1 and 8MP F828, with its electronic viewfinder (EVF), had people talking this year, but the electronics giant is about to let loose a couple of 7.2MP cameras just in time for the holidays. The more serious of the two is the DSC-V3 ($700 expected street), a follow-up to the DSC-V1. Into a 4.7x2.2x2.7-inch body, it packs a 2.5-inch LCD, Carl Zeiss 4X optical zoom lens, and both Memory Stick and CompactFlash card slots. It also boasts Sony's Hologram AF illuminator, 49-point metering, NightShot infrared, and a hot-shoe. Sony's other 7.2MP is the P150, which sports a small body and Zeiss 3X zoom lens.